Mindful Parenting…Solutions for Parents

Hand in Hand Mindful Parenting

Mindful ParentingAlong about twenty years ago, mindfulness came into my life. At the time, my own children were young and day to day living was anything but mindful.

After learning biofeedback techniques to overcome anxiety due to mitral valve prolapse, Jon Kabat-Zinn came into my life through his book

Full Catastrophe Living.

It was life changing and helped introduce me to yoga, which helped to prepare me for my inevitable open heart surgery 6 years ago.

So when I came across Kristen Race‘s book,

Mindful Parenting

I jumped in to see how I could relate my mindfulness practice with my “work” as a grandmother. Nothing is more important to me than family, children and grandchildren.

Kristen Race has helped me to effectively live the mindful life with my granddaughter in today’s fast paced world.

She explains in clear and simple terms how our brains work and how our stress effects  our own overall well being and that of our family. She goes on to give many helpful techniques to implement in our busy lives. Her tips help you to find the balance that is essential to manage stress. Balance is an integral part of living happier lives through “mindful parenting” and “mindful” grandparenting.

This is a book I will continue to read and dog ear the pages for years to come. It is one I will recommend to friends. As a therapist myself, I will recommend it to parents as a must read to help them parent mindfully!

Disclosure: This was a sponsored post. I was given a copy of “Mindful Parenting” for review.

Win a Back to School Gift from Hallmark!

There is nothing like little surprises and my grandchild loves them as much as I do.

Hallmark Cards has just the cutest items to surprise your child during lunchtime.

Many years ago, when my own girls were young, I was working and left home before my girls got up for school. I tried very hard to somehow connect with them prior to their leaving   for school or while they were in school.

I always left them breakfast and for lunch I would use a cookie cutter to shape their sandwiches into “heart” shapes. Every now and then I would leave a handwritten note.

Then, when they both went to “sleep away” camp I had to depend on “snail” mail to deliver, cards, letters and packages. It was fun choosing from companies that specialized in camp baskets designed for kids away from home, who were not allowed to have candy and food items in their cabin….not easy!

As school reopens….I find myself along with my daughter trying to make lunch not only healthy, but interesting and fun. It is an opportunity to share a moment during the day to say something special to a sweet little girl starting out in the world.

Here are some of the fun “Back to School” Hallmark items that I found to help make my grandchild’s lunch a memorable moment of her day at school.

Enter the contest below if you would like to win these items in a Back-to-School Gift Pack from Hallmark!

 

Win It!

I get to give one Back-to-School Gift Pack to one of you! To enter, tweet the following and leave me a comment letting me know you did:

Tweet “@LoretteLavine I want to win the @Hallmark Back to School Gift pack.

Extra Entries:

Follow ParentingintheLoop on Facebook
Follow Hallmark on Facebook
Follow LoretteLavine on Twitter
Follow HallmarkCards on Twitter

Leave one comment per task letting me know you did, or already do.

Sweepstakes run from today, September 7 until  Saturday Night September 9th

I was not compensated for this post. I was given product for review and giveaway. All opinions are my own.

There is no winner for this gift pack from Hallmark as there were no comments or tweets related to this post.


 

Are you an unhappy parent???

Did having children change your level of happiness?

What a loaded question!

Ever since reading the articles listed below and then Lisa Belkin’s post about why these studies about parental happiness are wrong, I have been mulling this question over in my head.

I always remember hearing from early on in adulthood, that if your marriage was already in trouble and you were not as happy as you thought you could be, adding a child into the equation would not necessarily help an already problematic situation.

That being said, when I had my first child it was only a few months after our first wedding anniversary. Both my husband and I had been through a very stressful year. On my side of the marriage was, illness of very close family members, which took a toll on me emotionally. We both started new jobs and moved to South Florida’s  rural Treasure Coast after living our entire lives in the New York and Boston metro areas. This was a total culture shock for both of us. To add to it, we had no family in Florida However, my mother was planning to relocate with my grandmother to the city north of us. My grandmother died just prior to the move which left me and my mother devastated.

In addition, I had some pretty serious medical issues which made my pregnancy “high risk” so we traveled to Miami (2 hours away) for all of my prenatal visits. Leaving my obstetrician in New York was one of the most difficult things I had to do. I secretly planned in my head to go back to NYC to deliver my baby up until my last trimester.

Finally I came to my senses and registered to deliver at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. It was a great hospital but left much to be desired when it came to mom’s creature comforts.

When I gave birth to my daughter…I was ecstatic! There was no post partum depression for me. All the sadness was behind me. It was winter in South Florida, the sun was shining and I was beaming. I had waited a long time to become a mother.

Fast forward two years…I delivered another little girl, again at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami…I could not have been happier. Oh…my medical problems continued with heart flutters etc. so no more pregnancies were advised. It was a momentary sadness. It did not take me long to realize that two children less than two years apart was going to keep me pretty busy for a very long time.

There were many moments between then and now that I have to say I experienced some unhappiness as a parent. Parenting was not easy and it still isn’t. Both my husband and I came from different religious and cultural backgrounds so that had its advantages and disadvantages. We worked out the “December Dilemma” and our respective families went along with the traditions and memories we were making for our family of four.

As I look back now…I was for the most part always happy…my glass is forever half full…I have never had a half empty glass that I can remember. For that I am thankful and feel blessed.

My mother died 11 years ago and my only sibling died 6 years ago, those were difficult losses to bear but my children and husband have been there for me.

It is difficult for me to even think about a life without having had my children and now I am fortunate to be a grandmother. Becoming a grandparent has made my life fuller than I could ever have imagined.

I now understand how my grandmother felt taking care of me and how my mother felt taking care of my girls. Life has come full circle in so many ways.

No matter what the studies say…I have a hard time believing that so many parents are unhappy being parents.

Maybe their expectations of parenthood are too high and thus happiness escapes them.

I  truly feel for them.

What are your experiences and feelings about this discussion?       

 

 

 

 

 

Lisa Belkin: Why So Many Studies About Parents And Happiness Are Wrong.

Does Having Children Make You Unhappy? – NYTimes.com.

Happy news on happiness; what can we believe? « Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.

Top 10 Reasons Parents Are Happier Than Non-Parents | Strollerderby.

Happy Families – How to be a Happy Family – Parenting.com.

Parents and Happiness are they mutually exclusive?

Did becoming parents make you unhappy???

I inadvertently published this link on my old website…So I am re-posting here.

This is such an interesting question to me. I will be discussing this in my head totally from a  hindsight perspective.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post when I post my own answer.

I hope you will join me with your comments!

Week in Review…Parenting in the Loop…

Some reading for the weekend…articles I want to share…ENJOY!

Peace of mind for working mothers who have to travel comes in all sorts of forms. While working fathers who go away on business may use some of the same tactics, mothers are often the ones laying out their children’s skating outfits and freezing extra dinners before they leave town.

 There has been some juggling — my baby-sitter needs to know that one child is going to a friend’s house this afternoon, and two other children will be staying home, instead of playing at a friend’s, because the logistics felt like they weren’t worth it (the baby-sitter’s got her own three kids, as well as mine, to juggle tonight).

Infant vaccinations can be a distressing experience for both parent and child. But new research suggests that parents can lessen the sting of an injection by soothing their babies with a quick series of comforting measures, including a popular technique called swaddling..

If you are reading this I hope you are enjoying Parenting in the Loop’s redesigned site. I appreciate you reading and following. You are great! …..Lorette

children…’image gently’

NOTEWORTHY WEDNESDAY!

Yesterday there was so much in the news about children and x-rays, in particular CAT scans.

The news ‘teasers’ kept repeating that ‘CAT scans for children may be doing more harm than good”

Scary….right?

Well, I want to post what I found related to this news so that  parents can make the correct decisions for their children without all the fear.

First, here is what the news reported:

“Number Of Children Receiving CT Scans At EDs (Emergency Departments) Increases Fivefold From 1999.

The CBS Evening News (4/5, story 5, 2:35, Smith) reported, “Radiation is used in CT scans everyday and a study out today says more American children are getting them in the ER, especially for stomach problems and head injuries than ever before.” On NBC Nightly News (4/5, story 9, 2:15, Williams) lead study author, Dr. David Larson from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital was shown saying, “What we found was from 1995 to 2008 the number of CT scans that were done in children who visited the ED increased fivefold.”

Yes, this is true and surely some of these scans and x-rays may not have been totally indicated and yes ‘gently imaging’ techniques may not have  been used properly depending on the facility where the scans were performed.

First…lets define safety:

“Definition of Safety: Safety involves the processes and strategies to avoid or minimize unnecessary risk to the patient. ”First, do no harm.”

via The Society for Pediatric Radiology: Safety.”

via ACR Daily News Scan.

Safety is of concern whenever children are exposed to radiation through x-rays.

As parents what do you need to know about x-rays and kids?

You need to know this: Radiologist have established protocols when it comes to pediatric x-rays…there is a recommdation referred to as ‘image gently’. This means use the least amount of radiation to accomplish the appropriate scan or x-ray.

You need to also know:

“Fluoroscopic procedures help us save kids’ lives!

But, when we image patients, radiation matters!

Children are more sensitive to radiation.

What we do now lasts their lifetimes

Image kids with care:

Pause and child-size the technique

use the lowest Pulse rate possible.

Consider ultrasound or MRI when possible.”

via image gently.

In addition to the above, parents need to be their child’s advocate when it comes to pediatric medical care.

“Helpful to both care-providers and parents: tracking the number of radiologic studies children are exposed to helps inform treating physicians of recent similar exams, helping them to decide if exams are necessary. Tracking the number of exams and location where the images are stored can be helpful in alerting families and their care providers to the issue of radiation safety.

Similar to an immunization record, use your choice of record size to record where and when a study was performed. This is particularly important when medical care is provided by a variety of physicians/ emergency rooms/ hospitals and can help decrease the number of repetitive exams.

via image gently

When faced with a pediatric medical situation parents need ask questions and get answers that they understand. If you are in a serious emergency with your child ask for the social worker or nurse manager to help you understand more clearly what is happening.

One thing you do not want to do is impede your child’s treatment but what you definitely want is to be an educated consumer of the medical care that is being recommended for your precious child.

I hope this post was helpful…